Katerina Siniakova stunned top-seed Serena Williams in the second round of the Emilia-Romagna Open in Parma on Tuesday. The Czech won in straight sets 7-6(4), 6-2 to reach the quarter-final.
In the opening set, Williams had a set point in the 10th game on Siniakova’s serve but the latter saved it. Thereafter, there was no looking back for her as she raced away in the first set tie-break and in the second set to claim the victory after an hour and 37 minutes of play.
In her interaction with the media after her win, Siniakova noted, “Not every day is really amazing. If you go to play against a player like this, you really have nothing to lose, so I came up and wanted to enjoy it. In the beginning, I was so nervous, but when it was 1-1 everything just came down and I was just really enjoying it – I was feeling so free and so easy that it just really went my way. So, I should really try harder to feel like this in every match, because you should enjoy what you’re doing – and that’s what I’m trying to find. I can play like this. I can do it not just in one match, and I hope it will not be just this match.”
In the quarter-final, the world no. 68 will play either Anna-Lena Friedsam or eighth seed Caroline Garcia.
Emilia-Romagna Open: Sloane Stephens, Coco Gauff keep American banner flying
The other upset of the day was that of fourth seed Daria Kasatkina. Sloane Stephens came from a set down to defeat the Russian 1-6, 6-4, 7-5 to reach the quarter-finals. Stephens will play either seventh seed Sara Sorribes Tormo or Sara Errani for a place in the semi-final. The Italian won her first-round match against Ana Bogdan 7-5, 4-6, 6-1.
Meanwhile, in the last-remaining first-round matches featuring seeded players, there were no upsets. Second seed Petra Martic advanced to the round-of-16 with a 6-4, 6-2 win over Varvara Gracheva. Likewise, third seed Coco Gauff reached the second round with a 7-6(6), 7-6(7) win over Kaia Kanepi.
Gauff will play Camila Giorgi for a place in the quarter-final against fifth seed Amanda Anisimova. Anisimova moved into the last-eight of the Emilia-Romagna Open with a 6-2, 6-4 win over Anna Karolina Schmiedlova.